The Hindustan Times Column
The Uttar Pradesh administration is building the world’s biggest jail in Lucknow with state-of-the-art security systems, double-storied barracks (of course, the air-conditioners would have to be fitted by the inmates), a gym and a hygienic central kitchen. We are not surprised that it is being built in Lucknow, more so in UP. To appreciate such an expensive facility, it will need a steady supply of inmates, not the small fry, but the real biggies (they lovingly call them ‘Don’ in UP). And which place can ensure a steady stream without fail year after year?
Spread over 200 acres, the prison will have a capacity of 3,000 inmates. We are sure that the administration is also thinking about mobile connectivity inside the prison, considering that the high net worth individuals, who would possibly grace the cells, will need uninterrupted service; after all, their businesses can’t just come to a halt because they are cooling their heels somewhere.
There is yet another reason that makes Lucknow the right choice. And, that’s got to do with climate change. Since some of the future guests at the facility could be current or former inhabitants of the Assembly, the government would save on transportation costs because the jail would be just on the city’s borders. Less fuel consumption in these inflation-hit times would mean less greenhouse gases. Now, the only question is who will be the first VIP guest of the new facility.